KUALA LUMPUR: Instead of being an armchair critic to the education system, independent programme Teach For The Needs (TFTN) decided to be the “third force” in addressing the issue.
TFTN executive director for policy and research Anas Alam Faizli said that the voluntarily-based programme aims to improve educational opportunities for orphans, underprivileged children and those from the “bottom tier”.
Speaking to The Star Online in a recent interview, he said TFTN gathered volunteers from all walks of life, from doctors to executives, who spent hours of their time educating these children for free.
“They include engineers, doctors, executives, professionals and university students. They are committed in what they do despite their full time job,” said Anas, whom himself is in an oil and gas industry.
Asked what made him to do something off his career track, he said he had always possessed a keen interest in tackling educational inequality.
“I believe education is the best instrument to alleviate the poor and balance the inequality gap.
“We do not want to reinvent the wheel. We are just trying to assist in what the Government or the private sector is not covering. We are like a third force NGO (non-governmental organisation),” he said.
Anas also said the educational gap in the country was worrying, as students were segregated as early as primary school.
“If you are smart, you go to a class A but if you are not, you go to a class Z. After a while, you will be surrounded by late bloomers who are left behind,” he said.
He said the same scenario occurred in secondary school, where most Form Three or Form Four students with difficulties in reading would eventually drop out from school.
“Those who drop out will form the lower tier of society and they are the ones who mostly cause social problems,” he said.